Hundreds gathered on the city’s Westside Saturday morning for the 19th annual César Chávez March for Justice. The march started at the corner of Guadalupe and South Brazos streets and brought together local activists, supporters, and companies to wave the flag of their choice, the most prolific being the United Farm Workers (UFW) union‘s banner, a deep red with the freedom eagle encircled. Chávez co-founded the union with fellow labor leader and civil right activist Dolores Huerta. Chávez passed away in 1993 and Huerta continues to dedicate her life to farm workers rights and working conditions.
Speeches by Mayor Ivy Taylor and fellow mayoral candidates Tommy Adkisson and Mike Villarreal preceded the March for Justice. Henry Rodriguez, founder and organizer of LULAC Concilio Zapatista 4383, also spoke. I asked Rodriguez what his thoughts were going into this year’s march.
“We have high hopes, we know the best is about to come, not just for Hispanics but for everyone. People are becoming better informed and better educated,” he said. “Education will set us all free.”
The front banner of the march called for a new holiday honoring Chávez on March 31, his birthday. The March for Justice continued east through downtown and ended at Alamo Plaza, picking up marchers along the way.